Peritraumatic dissociation and experiential avoidance as predictors of posttraumatic stress symptomatology

Behav Res Ther. 2005 May;43(5):569-83. doi: 10.1016/j.brat.2004.04.004.


This study examined whether peritraumatic dissociation serves as a proxy risk factor for experiential avoidance in its relationship with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptomatology. One hundred eighty-five trauma survivors completed measures that assessed for peritraumatic dissociation, experiential avoidance, and PTSD symptom severity. The results indicated that peritraumatic dissociation and experiential avoidance were significantly related to PTSD symptomatology at baseline. However, after initial levels of PTSD symptomatology were taken into account, only experiential avoidance was related to PTSD symptoms both 4- and 8-weeks later. These results indicate that peritraumatic dissociation is not a proxy risk factor for experiential avoidance and contributes to the growing body of literature indicating that experiential avoidance is an important factor related to the psychological symptoms experienced by trauma survivors.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Avoidance Learning*
  • Dissociative Disorders / psychology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
  • Regression Analysis
  • Risk Factors
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic / psychology*
  • Stress Disorders, Traumatic, Acute / psychology*
  • Survivors